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Weekend Wrap-Up: Dory Dominates with $135.06 Million, Central is Solid with $35.54 Million

June 21st, 2016

Finding-Dory

In our prediction column, I said I wanted the top two films to earn a combined total of $150 million to $170 million. Finding Dory's and Central Intelligence's combined opening weekend was $170.60 million. The overall box office was 53% higher than last weekend at $233 million. However, this was still 6.3% lower than the same weekend last year. Finding Dory did do better than either Jurassic World or Inside Out individually, but couldn't compete with their combined totals. 2016 is still ahead of 2015, but its lead was cut by a third at $150 million or 3.1%. That said, 2016 hit $5 billion a week faster than 2015 did and its lead of $5.06 billion to $4.91 billion is still substantial.

Finding Dory set several records over the weekend, including biggest single day and opening weekend for Pixar, as well as animated films in general. Its opening weekend was $135.06 million, making it the third fastest opening film of the year. Its reviews are nearly identical to The Jungle Book's reviews are and only behind Zootopia for best of the year for a wide release. All three of these movies are released by Disney. Family friendly animated films tend to have really long legs, so $400 million seems like the low end for the movie's final domestic box office. If it can just match Zootopia internationally, then it will become the third film to reach $1 billion this year. Again, all three films were released by Disney.

Central Intelligence was well back in second place, but its opening weekend haul of $35.54 million is better than most people were expecting. It's also better than Kevin Hart's previous film this year, Ride Along 2, and more successful than last year's San Andreas with Dwayne Johnson. Granted, that San Andreas had a better opening, but it also cost twice as much to make ($110 million vs. $50 million), so Central Intelligence is a bigger financial hit here. The film's reviews remain solidly in the overall positive level and without a lot of direct competition, the film has a relatively good shot at $100 million domestically. If it can merely match that internationally, then it will break even, possibly before its home market run. Kevin Hart hasn't found breakout success internationally, but Dwayne Johnson has.

The Conjuring 2: The Enfield Poltergeist fell 63% on its way to a third place, with a $14.88 million sophomore stint, while its running tally rose to $71.06 million after two weeks of release. By comparison, the first film fell just 47%. The Enfield Poltergeist still has a shot at $100 million domestically, but it is far from a sure thing. That said, the film has already made enough worldwide to cover its $40 million production budget and very likely all of its global P&A budget. There's no reason for the studio to not like these numbers.

The same can't be said for Now You See Me 2, as it only managed $9.37 million over the weekend for a total of $41.09 million after ten days of release. It too fell faster than its predecessor (58% vs. 35%), but the decline was so great and its production budget was so high ($90 million) that I don't see this film making a profit any time soon. Unless it is a massive hit internationally, I don't see how the studio can justify turning the franchise into a trilogy.

The final film in the top five was Warcraft, which earned $7.24 million during its second weekend of release, lifting its running tally to $31.43 million. At this pace, even getting to $50 million could be out of the question. Granted, it is a major hit internationally, but even then, half of its money is coming from China and neither studio sees a whole lot of the money from China.

One last note: Captain America: Civil War topped $400 million on Saturday, the 44th day of its release. It is the first film to reach that milestone this year, but it won't be the last.

- Finding Dory Comparisons
- Central Intelligence Comparisons

Filed under: Weekend Wrap-up, Central Intelligence, Warcraft, Finding Dory, The Jungle Book, Captain America: Civil War, The Conjuring 2: The Enfield Poltergeist, Now You See Me 2, Now You See Me, Kevin Hart, Dwayne Johnson